Traps & Delts Workout

Muscular woman flexing shoulders

The trapezius muscles sit along the upper back, one on each side. Together they create a long, almost triangular-shaped muscle spanning across the top half of the back. The main function of these muscles being to secure the shoulder blade at the thorax. The deltoid muscles make up the shoulder area and span from just under the collarbone to the top of the biceps muscles on each arm. To create a workout targeting these muscles, you need to include the right exercises.

Shrug It Out

One of the best exercises for your trapezius muscles is the barbell shrug. Stand straight up holding a barbell with an overhand grip and keeping your arms fully extended so the barbell is resting in front of your thighs. Keeping the rest of your body rigid, shrug your shoulders up as high as you can, then lower them back down for one rep. Repeat.

Row, Row, Row Your Traps

To strengthen your trapezius muscles, include the cable-incline row exercise in your workout. Sit on an incline with your feet flat and about shoulder-width apart. Grasp onto the low pulley attachment with both your hands, then straighten your torso, pulling the cable attachment with you until your back is completely upright. Return to your starting position to complete one rep.

Arnold Press for Power

The Arnold press is easily one of the most effective exercises for the deltoids. This isolated exercise targets the deltoid muscles and also works the trapezius muscles in your back. Sit on the edge of a weight bench, legs bent on a 90-degree angle, feet about shoulder-width apart. Bend your arms in front of your chest, palms facing in, with a dumbbell in each hand. Make sure your elbows are directly under your wrists. Move your arms out to the sides then up, straight over your head so your palms face forward. Return to your original position then repeat.

Raise It Up

The dumbbell front raise exercise works your deltoids and is an integral exercise to include in your total workout plan. Stand with your feet slightly wider than hip-width apart, arms down at your sides, a dumbbell in each hand, palms facing your body. Simultaneously, move your arms up, keeping them straight until they are parallel to the floor. Lower your arms back down for one rep then repeat.

Sets and Reps

No workout is complete without planning, and the most important aspect is the number of sets and reps you complete. Start off with just a single set of 12 reps, and as you build strength and the workout becomes easier, you can gradually increase the weight -- by no more than a 10-percent increment each time. Work your way up to a full three sets of 12 to 15 reps.